Voorhees, NJ -- Interesting news out of Flyers practice on Wednesday, as Scott Hartnell revealed that a shot from teammate Kimmo Timonen was not primarily responsible for the broken foot that will keep him out of the lineup for at least one month.
"It actually happened in the second period of that (January 22) game," Hartnell told a group of reporters outside the Skate Zone. "One of the Devils' defensemen took a shot and I
blocked it with my foot and by the way it felt, I knew something was
wrong. At the intermission, I took my skate off to have Jimmy
[McCrossin, trainer] look at it, and when I went to take a step, it hurt
so much I fell to the floor in the locker room."
Despite the pain, and the fact that x-rays taken didn't immediately reveal any telling damage, Hartnell was able to go in the third period and then felt the full brunt of Timonen's shot while attempting to screen Devils goaltender Martin Brodeur.
Hartnell revealed that a similar injury occurred back when he played for the Nashville Predators: "It happened a few years back in Nashville...the same thing...I blocked a shot, x-rays came back negative. At home, I couldn't walk down stairs...and finally, a couple days later I was warming up for a game and the bone actually snapped. That was not the most pleasant surprise...so the next day I told the trainers I need to get an MRI...it was the same kind of feeling and sure enough, there was a break in there."
It's not in the nature of the 30-year-old to wallow in his misfortune, though.
"The worst part about being an athlete (who is hurt) is being on the sidelines, watching on TV and in the stands. It definitely gives you motivation to do the rehab and get back as quickly as you can."
In typical Flyers fashion, there's the will and desire to blast through the healing process and get back to playing as soon as he's medically allowed.
As for the plan going forward with rehabilitation if it happens to progress ahead of schedule, Hartnell said: "That's something between me and the doctors to decide. I'm not trying to run a marathon or anything like that...I'm trying to get my foot...in a skate and see how it is, how comfotably I can skate and how odd it feels. If it's three weeks, it's three weeks, if it's four it's four, and hopefully it's not too much longer than that."